Typically, there are only a few different numbers of decks used by casinos in their blackjack games. Single and double deck games are popular among players looking to cut into the house edge, while more standard blackjack games use four, six, or eight decks. Why not find a list of the different variants of blackjack with different amount of decks.
Big Five Blackjack takes a slightly different approach, using a five-deck shoe. Other than that, the game is fairly similar to a standard blackjack game! If you want to jump straight into the actions, here are the top 5 providers of the Big Five blackjack game.
Best Big Five Blackjack Sites
How to Play Big Five Blackjack
Big Five Blackjack is just standard blackjack, so if you know how to play blackjack, you’re already set. But for those new to blackjack, here’s a quick rundown of how to play.
A hand of Big Five Blackjack starts with each player making a bet. Each player then receives two cards face up to make their hand, while the dealer gets one card face up, and one face down. Every hand has a score, based on the cards that make up the hand. Numbered cards have a point value equal to their number and face cards are worth 10 points. Aces are a little different; they normally count as 11, but if that would take the value of your hand over 21, they count as one point instead.
The object of the game is to make a hand as close to 21 points as possible without going over. If you start the game with a hand of 21 (an ace and a ten-point card), you automatically win your bet at 3-2 odds; this is known as a blackjack.
If the dealer starts the game with an ace or a ten showing, they will check to see if they have a blackjack. If the dealer has a blackjack, all players lose, except for those who also have blackjacks, who push instead. Before checking, the dealer will ask players if they want to take insurance. The insurance bet pays 2:1 if the dealer has a blackjack, and costs half of your initial bet to make; the end result is that the player will break even if the dealer has a blackjack, “saving” their initial bet. Players with blackjack will be given the option to take an even money win, which is essentially the same bet as taking insurance.
Assuming there are no blackjacks, the game continues with players now having the chance to play out their hands. At any time, players may stand, which means that they are done playing their hand. They may also hit, meaning they’d like to be dealt an additional card to add to their hand’s score. If the player’s hand ever goes over 21 points, the player busts, and loses all bets on that hand immediately.
On their first two cards, players also have additional options. If the player is confident in their hand, they may “double down” by making a second bet of equal size to their first bet. If they do so, they receive only one more card, after which they must stand. If the first two cards a player receives are of the same rank, the player also has the option to split them into two separate hands, each of which must be played independently for a bet equal to the size of the initial bet.
After all players are done playing their hands, the dealer reveals their face down card. The dealer must play their hand according to rules posted at the table. In Big Five Blackjack, the dealer hits on all hands of 16 or less, as well as “soft” 17s – that is, 17s that include an ace which still counts as 11 points. On hard 17s or any higher hand, the dealer must stand.
If the dealer goes over 21, the dealer busts, and all players remaining in the hand win all live bets. If the dealer stands, then the dealer hand is compared to the player hands. If a player hand is higher than the dealer hand, the player wins even money on all bets. If a player hand is lower than the dealer hand, the player loses all bets. If the player and dealer tie, all bets push.
Big Five Blackjack Strategy
Because Big Five Blackjack is a fairly standard blackjack game, it can be played using a standard blackjack basic strategy card designed for five-deck blackjack games where the dealer hits on soft 17s. The house edge in this game is 0.47%.